Yesterday was my chemo day. Normally I see Dr. Mac just before for a general checkup and to make sure my bloodwork is good to go. Before seeing the doctor, I go over a thousand and one questions with her nurse. You know … the usual. How are you feelin’? Any fevers? Any swelling? And my personal favorite … am I regular?
These answers all tend to be good, none, a little and yes, I’m regular. When we get all the questions out of the way, we then go over my med list, etc. Yesterday Dr. Mac was out of town, so I met with her Physicians Assistant, Meg. Very nice. — very thorough.
The thing I found surprising, though, was when she asked how I was feeling overall. I had to stop and think about it for a moment. I felt good. Actually felt good. Anyone going through chemo treatment knows how unusual this is. Despite the fact that I rarely react adversely to my chemo cocktails, I’m usually left with a general yuk feeling. A kind of out of sorts, not hitting all cylinders feeling. This is something that usually comes on over the course of months, if not years and you just become so used to it that you no longer notice it.
Well, yesterday I felt damned good. On a scale of one to ten (with ten being “I cannot endure the pain another second”) I normally gauge my pain level as being around a three or a four. I rarely, if ever go above a five or six. After giving it a bit of thought, I told Meg that I could probably come in at a one if not a zero, pain-wise. Nothing was hurtin’ at that moment, which is a surprise. Between my hip, the neuropathy and my general state of health, I’m always at some level of pain. The curious thing is that I haven’t been taking my Vicodin. For whatever reason, I stopped taking it about a week ago and make do with Advil if I begin to get a headache. Even then, I don’t think I popped more than two or four Advil.
Now comes the question of whether there is some connection between the Vicodin and my new well-being? Shouldn’t be. After all, Vicoden is a painkiller. If anything, I should be feeling better taking it. I’m still on the Fentynal patch, so I haven’t gone cold turkey with my pain meds.
I plan to continue avoiding the Vicodin and we’ll see if this continues.
And remember to repeat after me …“YOU ARE A CANCER WARRIOR”